Saturday, August 14, 2010

Ten Rock Band DLC Songs You Should Buy...And Ten You Shouldn't

Before I finish the "Story of My Life," I wanted to take the time to talk to ANYONE who has a slight interest in Rock Band for today's consoles.  I've always wanted to make a list like this.  Anyway, I own a lot of DLC songs (500+ to be exact), and most cost $2/160 MSP per song (unless you buy them in bulk and save money, but that's another story).  So if you own a copy of RB2 and are interested in buying just a few good songs, then here's some that I recommend.  And yeah, it's sad that MAYBE I could've saved all the DLC money for a Daytona cabinet, but I'd have nowhere to put that...

BUT FIRST...if you haven't done so already...

Get a copy of Rock Band ONE.  It doesn't matter if you bought it or not.  Put the CD in the game, go to Options, and click on Export.  For $5/400 MSP you can download 54 songs to your RB2 library (only three songs aren't imported, Enter Sandman, Run to the Hills, and Paranoid, but you can buy the real RttH from the RB2 store).  You should do this ASAP.

Another thing is that if you bought a copy of RB2 in the box, there should be a code inside to download 20 free songs.  You have to enter it in the Rock Band site here.  The site then emails you another code that you must type in on your Xbox 360.  You'll download the songs.  This can be complicated to do, but if you can do it, you should take advantage of this.  Beware that the code is a one-time thing (unlike the RB1 import).

Onto the show.  Now look, I know some people are going to disagree or say "you should include X" or "song Y sucks you don't know anything," but I'm mostly rating songs on how fun they are to play.  You don't necessarily HAVE to buy all of these, but if you're confused, try these.  Also, these lists are in no particular order so whatever.


1. Boston - Hitch a Ride - Everyone loves Boston--buy the whole album if you can, but usually people just go for More Than a Feeling.  That's ok, but Hitch a Ride is probably the best in terms of charts.  Guitar has some variety and a neat solo.  Drums has good variety for a medium-difficulty song.  And the vocals are quite diverse.  Check this one out.

2. Iron Maiden - Powerslave - To be fair, a lot of the Iron Maiden songs are really good, particularly Aces High, Fear of the Dark, and Hallowed Be Thy Name, but I like Powerslave a lot.  The drums are insanely hard but in a good way, tons of hand-foot separation.  Guitar and Bass are pretty difficult with hard and easy parts (two solos).  This song's quite lengthy too so it's a good deal for your money.

3. No Doubt - Sunday Morning - Yeah, I know what you're saying--this is a piss easy No Doubt song, it sucks, wahhh, but no, it's quite good.  Bass, Guitar, and Drums are all over the place and it's one of Gwen's better songs IMO.  This is a good easy song for all you people out there, probably the best choice available.

4. Grateful Dead - China Cat Sunflower - I'm kind of pissed that Grateful Dead gets a million songs while Fleetwood Mac gets three...but anyway, this is one of the best Guitar tracks you can buy.  Just tons of hammer-on and pull-off roller coasters.  And what makes this better is that the drums and bass aren't bad either.  And what makes this even better is that in the final solo of the song, the screen does this LSD effect which means you get to feel as high as Grateful Dead when they made this!

5. Lamb of God - Laid To Rest - Yeah, a metal song from a band named this doesn't exactly strike me as appealing.  The vocals are completely expendable as far as I'm concerned.  However, the guitar and bass are really fun and not that difficult.  It's a metal song that you don't have to bust your ass on this one.  Drums aren't hard but still fun.  Surprisingly entertaining.

6. Alice in Chains - Would? - This is an easily recognizable song that's also crazy fun.  Every instrument is fun and there's a good bit of variety.  Fun chords and stuff.  Not the hardest song in the world, but give this one a try.

7. Jimi Hendrix - Bold as Love - Yes, very good!  There's a couple of other good Hendrix songs and most people will go with Spanish Castle Magic, but this one's most well-rounded.  Surprisingly, Hendrix songs have really good (albeit difficult) drum tracks.  On the other hand, guitar can be a hit or miss--Grateful Dead fun or just stubborn with random chords.  This one's just right in terms of chords and ho-pos.  It's challenging on Guitar but worth playing many times.  Vocals are crazy and bass is decent.

8. Queen - Somebody to Love - Well, for starters, it's Queen.  This is probably the best song they have (maybe I Want It All, but it's close).  Vocals are just astounding, best Freddie Mercury song it seems.  On guitar, you play the piano, but it's very good, there's chords going all over the place, tons of variety.  Everything else is decent.  Plus everyone loves this song so that's a plus.

9. Freezepop - Less Talk More Rokk - For starters, let me just say this song makes me want to run into oncoming traffic, especially with the use of "Rokk" in the title, but wow, I got to say the guitar's not bad.  It's like Grateful Dead, but somewhat faster and quite challenging.  Drums are good, bass is good, and I guess if you actually like this dreck, vocals are good.  And the best part?  It's $1/80 MSP instead of $2 so that's good right?

10. Rush - YYZ - It's not a good list unless it has Rush in it, I guess.  DON'T UNDERESTIMATE TEH PROG.  Anyway, most Rush songs are good, but I was really conflicted between this and Red Barchetta, but I go with this since it's more difficult and not as boring.  The guitar and bass charts make up for this purchase alone since you got all these crazy ho-po chains going every which way.  Most fun bass chart in the game.  Drums are excrutiatingly difficult though, but if you can pass it, you'll feel really good about yourself.

CRANK IT UP TO 11. Pearl Jam - Jeremy - I'm sorry, I know some of you are disappointed it's not 10 instead of 11, but this one's too goo to pass up.  The vocals are damn good (and emotional too).  Guitar, bass, and drums aren't hard, but once again, a song doesn't necessarily have to be hard to be fun.  This one's just great to play.

Honorable Mentions: Lucretia, Aces High, Fear of the Dark, Smooth Criminal, Toxicity, Henrietta, Ride the Lightning, Sleepwalker, Icarus (Borne on the Wings of Steel), Blue Collar Man (Long Nights), Tribute, 100,000 Years, Rest In Peace...Polaris, Sea and Sand, Spanish Castle Magic, Peace of Mind, Love Spreads, 3's and 7's, Red Barchetta, Mary Jane's Last Dance.

Really, you could make the case for most songs.  I'm just trying to pick the best songs for your money if you're impartial to what it sounds like, etc.


1. Spongebob - A Day Like This - Ok, you're probably thinking it's Spongebob, it's only a dollar, but trust me, this song is short, generic, repetitive and STUPID.  Don't buy this even for a penny.  It's so stupid, buy The Best Day Ever instead if you need a Spongebob song.

2. Ministry - Stigmata - Congratulations, Ministry, you are worst band ever.  This song is quite lengthy but you play the same thing OVER AND OVER AGAIN.  The drums are nothing but a drum roll and your arms will fall over when everything's said and done so yeah, this sucks.  Plus I think the vocals are all talkie (you don't need to match a pitch) which just sucks even more.

3. No Doubt - Hey Baby - The same band that gives you Sunday Morning gives you this piece of garbage.  Guitar and bass are nothing but a few synthesized notes and they are repetitive and hardly fun.  Vocals are just messed up with the reggae dude coming in out of nowhere.  Drums are the best part of the song but it's repetitive and you play these stupid 16th notes or whatever that they just crammed in there to make you uncomfortable.

4. The Runaways - Cherry Bomb - Never mind the fact that this is a cover, the vocals make you want to kill yourself.  Pass.

5. The Ramones - Rockaway Beach - Most punk songs are just a bunch of fast chords and the drums are just really fast standard beats.  This song epitomizes all the bad of punk so just stay the hell away unless you like stupid crap like this.  Oh, btw, this song's just two minutes long.  Great deal for you money, huh?

6. The Pixies - Silver - Disregarding the fact this song sounds like an animal dying, the drums consist of like 12 notes over a 3 minute song (see vid) and everything else about this song just sucks.  Yes, I know that the Pixies songs take so much crap for being "bad" but this is king of suckage.  STAY AWAY.

7. Foreigner - Blue Morning, Blue Day - Yeah, I think Foreigner kicks ass, but they had to pick one of their most boring songs for this.  The guitar is so bad, it's just a bunch of held notes in a row.  SO STUPID and not fun.  This song puts me to sleep too.

8. Jane's Addiction - Jane Says - You might be thinking, "This is Jane's Addiction, it's one of their most popular songs, it doesn't sound bad, what's your problem?"  Well, the vocals on this song are pretty good BUT THAT'S IT.  You play the same thing on drums, guitar, and bass for five minutes straight.  Beat your head against the wall and pick other Jane's Addiction songs instead, like Ocean Size, Idiots Rule, or Had a Dad.

9. Talking Heads - Once in a Lifetime - I love this song to death, but guess what?  First, the vocals.  What's wrong?  Well, the parts where the guy rants--I originally thought this song would have pitch (it sounds like it), but no, it's talkie which means you can babble your way through it.  The "Let the days go by.." part is okay but insanely repetitive--you sing it like 50 times.  The guitar and bass in this song is very sparse and there's no substance at all--it's hollow and boring.  Drums aren't the worst, but you play this little stuffle repeatedly that literally gave me a seizure--not joking.  It was painful to play.  Highly unrecommended.

10. James Brown - Get Up (I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine - Pt 1 - Wow, great name huh.  Anyway, funk music in Rock Band, hey I'll take it.  How can this song be bad?  Well, take a look at the rest of the songs, just the same few chords OVER AND OVER AGAIN FOR OVER SIX MINUTES.  Bass is only marginally better.  Drums, SAME THING.  Vocals, the only saving grace?  Well, it is James Brown after all, but the problem is--yep more repetition.  Half the song is talkie which means you can just babble at the same pitch and do very well.  I don't know, this song's a jive turkey--get Pick Up the Pieces or Shooting Star instead.  BTW, it just makes zero sense that the default character on vocals is always a white guy.  Yeah, racist, but come on, really?  White mohawk dude singing James Brown?

Honorable Mentions: Master/Slave, The End, all the Hautewerk songs, Let Love Rule, Something in the Way, Moving in Stereo, I'm In Touch With Your World, Beetlebum, Ready Set Go, Heroes, Calling Dr. Love, I Don't Care.


Now I know that these aren't the only good or bad songs in the game.  Some songs like Smooth Criminal and Love Spreads are good, but I can't possibly include them all and besides, some are just gimme picks anyway.  Like most people will impulsively buy Smooth Criminal anyway.  And as for bad--well there's a lot of slow, boring indie songs, but I didn't want to list them all because that's a bit obvious and you know what you're in for.  You can learn more about DLC reviews at this site (it's crap now but still, somewhat useful):

Anyway, I hope this has been slightly informative and have a great day.

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